Wednesday 26th January 2022

House of Flying Daggers (15)
Directed by: Zhang Yimou
Reviewed by: Paul Fonz

Some fine films have been released in the last year, including my personal favourites Lost In Translation, Spider-Man 2 and The Incredibles, but it seems the best has been saved for last, with the Boxing Day release of House of Flying Daggers.

When concentrating on your fingers, it's easy to get your sword caught in your hair
When concentrating on your fingers, it's easy to get your sword caught in your hair

From Zhang Yimou, the man behind the breathtaking Hero, comes an extraordinary Chinese film that everyone should see. Zhang Ziyi (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Hero) secures her place as the leading lady of choice for Chinese martial arts films, this time playing a blind member of the House of Flying Daggers sent to assassinate some government officials.

However, two local police captains find out about her plan and decide to team up and trick the girl into leading them to the headquarters of her anti-government organisation. As the film continues, the plot becomes more complex, although it's easy to ignore the story for the most part and just be swept along by the incredible scenery and beautiful action sequences littered throughout.

Set somewhere in the hazy history of China, this film is about more than evil governments and assassination plots, it's also romantic and emotional, but above all it is simply a joy to watch.

Zhang Yimou has clearly learned much from making Hero, and also from other directors, but what he has learned he has really made work here. This is definitely one to go and see – a strong candidate for my favourite film of the year.

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Length: 119 minutes
Certificate: 15
Official Site:
IMDB Link:
Release Date: 26th December 2004

Top Five Rating: 100.0%100.0%100.0%100.0%100.0%100.0%100.0%100.0%100.0%100.0% (100.0%)
User Rating: 90.0%90.0%90.0%90.0%90.0%90.0%90.0%90.0%90.0%90.0% (90.0%)

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